Sizing Up Your Credit History

Many of you have applied for a quick loan through the major equipment companies, Farm Credit or agricultural banks. Many are using a quick credit scoring system to quickly analyze your credit risk. The following are some of the things that they examine. Approximately 35% of your score can come from your credit history.

Here are some factors that are included in the score:

  • Credit card balances as a percent of the limit. The lower the balance, the better the score.

  • Credit card limits. They are considered an unsecured line of credit that can be used at your discretion.

  • Judgements against you, as well as court appearances.

  • Number of tradelines and sources of credit.

  • Zero credit cards will lower your score as well as more than four cards.

  • Recent delinquent accounts less than one year.

  • Number of inquiries concerning credit. A member of the Federal Reserve Board of Governors was turned down for credit because he was mortgage shopping for the lowest rate and giving permission to check his history.

Tips concerning credit cards and history

  • Check your credit history before making a major change in your business or life event.

  • Photocopy all cards. Keep in a safe place.

  • Don’t sign the back of your card.

  • Employers may check your credit history during the interview process.

  • Check your credit history every two years.

It is fun to watch the football recruiting and rankings. However, it takes team chemistry to make it happen.

Shoeshine wisdom.

This past week I was in Portland, OR, and Spokane, WA, at a cooperative and executive producers institute.

The lines in the airports are irregular – expect a one-hour wait at some and at others, less than five minutes. My shoeshine people at the airports still say business is slow, a sign of our economy’s health.

Down on the Farm

My #2 son had to shop for a new e-mail provider. Our provider decided to go to cable service so they are not servicing people with telephone modems. You and I both know how many farms are beyond the reach of cable lines. I’m sure I don’t need to tell you how I feel about them not servicing us anymore. I feel they are making a big mistake. To do business in the U.S. in the future, you must provide services. Period. My e-mail address is:sullylab@vt.edu

Editors' note: Dave Kohl, Soybean Digest Trends Editor, is an ag economist at Virginia Tech. He recently completed a sabbatical working with the Royal Bank of Canada. He is now back at Virginia Tech with his academic appointment, which is teaching, extension, and applied research.

To see Dave Kohl's previous road warrior adventures type Dave Kohl in the Search blank at the top of the page.

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